Becoming A Better Friend

Do you long to become a better friend? Have you seen other people in your life develop friendships that last for their entire lives? If you have the hope and desire to make friends that will be with you through your entire life, you need to learn how to become a better friend. Becoming a better friend is a self-determination that you need to follow through. You must be able to learn how to reach out to other people and to be the type of friend that you would like to have in order to get other people to respond to you. Becoming a better friend can come down to many different factors but here are some of the key elements that can help you to become a better friend.

Listen

A good friend is one that knows how to listen. You do not always want to be the friend that is talking all the time. You have to start listening and getting your friends to see that you are a great person to vent to and a person that really does care. When you learn to listen, your friends will be able to appreciate you more and they will realize that you are always kind and thoughtful in your listening abilities.

Compliments

What is a great way to show a person that you care about them? Pay them a compliment! A good friend is one that can recognize things about their friends. You will notice when they get a haircut or when they look nice. It is a good idea to focus on giving a nice compliment to your friends in order to see them flourish and to love being around you. Compliments are great ways to let people know that you do notice them, and we all want to be noticed right?

Thank Them

A great way to become a good friend is by taking the time to tell your friends that you appreciate having them in your life. Teen girls need to have good friends to help them through the ups and downs of the teen years. Make sure you are thanking your friends that always stand by you and always support you no matter what. Having a good support group is one of the best things to have as a teen and you need to be there for your friends in the same way they are there for you.

Give them attention

When they are talking or when you are hanging out with your friends, do you give them attention? It is important that you give them your eye contact when they are talking and that you are present with your friends. You need to give them the attention that they need and crave. If you are always on your cell phone and playing on your iPod when they are talking, you are not offering them the type of attention they need and deserve.

Be available

It is common to have a lot of things get in the way in life and can cause you to become busy. When you are too busy for your friends, you may notice that your relationships start to fade. You need to make time for your friends and to be available for them if you hope to have strong relationships with them for the rest of your life. Try to plan nights where you can hang out with them. If you are busy, consider getting together to do your homework together. It’s the little ways that you get together and hang out that will have an impact on your friendship for many years to come.

You snooze, you lose, how to help your best friend get over her ex

When your friend is struggling to get over an ex, it does not just affect them, it also affects you. So, help your friend to get over their ex by doing the following:

  1. Don’t let them try to be their friend, make sure them make a clean break. If they are having a hard time getting over the guy, why would trying to be his friend make it any easier? It won’t. So, insist that she does not try and be his friend.
  2. Go in for some intervention. You want to be sure to erase her ex’s telephone number from her cell phone. Why? Because next time she is bored and looking through her phone book for someone to call, you don’t want her to try and call him. She is trying to get over him, not back together with him. So, intervene and erase that number. Also go into their email and delete their old emails and their handle from her online “buddy” lists so that conversation and staying in touch is not possible. She does not need to know when he is online and not talking to her.
  3. Get her out on the town and involved in social activities. A lot of the time, when someone dates the same person for a while, they sort of fall out of the social scene and spend a lot of time one on one and leave their friends in the cold. So, forgive her, and get her back involved. Don’t let her sit around staring at the mementos of her failed love. Pack them away.
  4. Buy her a journal for venting. A journal or notebook is a great way to vent your pain, anger, frustration and so forth, so it is therapeutic for her, and it helps you from having to endure too much listening to the same old sob story. You want to be there for her, but not hear this tale a million times, so let her write it out.
  5. Spoil your friend. When you have a hard break up, and getting over the ex is difficult, nothing helps more than ice cream, shopping sprees, and a whole lot of fun to take your mind off it all. So, help that happen. She will likely return the favor some day.
  6. If she was sexually active with her ex, make sure she buys new bedding and changes her room around so that not everything reminds her of the intimate moments they spent together.
  7. Don’t let her rebound. That spells trouble, and more heart ache or regret. Just get her out on the town having fun, but don’t let her hook up, go home with, or even get semi-serious with anyone too soon. After all, you are a teen, why get serious now when you could have so much fun?
  8. Don’t listen to the negative self-talk, and don’t allow her to do it. If she starts saying something is wrong with her, and that is why she has an ex not a boyfriend, it is time to step in. Tell her to knock off the crap. Remind her how much fun she is, and how lucky every guy out there is that her ex was stupid enough to end things. Then mean it. Show her guys that like her, make sure she is a fun person to be around, and make sure if she falls back into the negative self-talk that you revive her quick.

Thin is in, how to help your friend with an eating disorder

When you have a friend with an eating disorder, there are some things that you can do to help:

  • Learn as much as you can about eating disorders. Read books, articles, and brochures. If you have knowledge and understanding about their situation you will be a much bigger asset and much more helpful than someone who knows little. Instead of looking like someone trying to stick their nose in someone else’s business you look like a knowledgeable, caring, friend.
  • Know the differences between facts and myths about weight, nutrition, and exercise. This is so very important because knowing the facts will help you reason against any inaccurate ideas that your friend may be using as excuses to maintain their disordered eating patterns. You should compile information and have sources on hand to show healthy eating patterns, and information about weight, nutrition and exercise.
  • Be honest with your friend. In order to help your friend you need to be able to talk openly and honestly about your concerns with the person who is struggling with eating or body image problems. Avoiding it or ignoring it won’t help, so talk about it! Sometimes just seeing how much someone else cares and worries about them can help them take the steps to overcoming the disorder.
  • Be caring, but be firm. Caring about your friend does not mean being manipulated by them, or letting them do things because they want to. Your friend must be responsible for their actions and the consequences of those actions, so you need to be sure to avoid making rules, promises, or expectations that you cannot or will not uphold. What does this mean exactly? It means do not do things like promise not to tell anyone, or tell them that you will never talk to them again if they don’t stop. Truth is important, so only say and do things you really mean.
  • Compliment your friend’s wonderful personality, successes, or accomplishments. Most eating disorders start with an insecurity about worth and value, and become more as their self image, and therefore image image starts to come into question. So, be sure to remind your friend how great they are.
  • Be a good role model in regard to sensible eating, exercise, and self-acceptance. Do not talk bad about yourself or your body in front of them as it gives them an excuse to think poorly about their own. Do not binge or eat poorly when they are around. Example is key!
  • Tell someone. It may seem difficult to know when, if at all, to tell someone else about your concerns. However, eating disorders are serious problems and you can’t help your friend if you do not address their body image or eating problems in the beginning stages. If you can get them help early, this gives your friend the best chance for working through these issues and becoming healthy again. Don’t wait until the situation is so severe that your friend’s life is in danger.
  • Be supportive and understanding, but not accepting of the disorder. As soon as you begin to rationalize or allow them to have the disorder, your value for helping them diminishes. Your friend needs as much support and understanding as possible, but they also need to know how much you hate that they suffer with the problem.

Friendship 911, how to recognize when a friend is suffering from depression

Depression is a serious problem, and with the rise of depression in teens, it is important to know how to recognize when your friends are suffering from depression so that you can help them to help themselves.

With teens depression is not like it is with adults. You will find that your friends may exhibit irritability as the predominant mood, not so much being depressed. They may act hostile, grumpy, or easily lose their temper.

Also, if your friend complains of unexplained aches and pains, such as headaches and stomachaches, you may want to have some concern as this is also a common symptom of depression in children and teens.

The following are some of the signs that indicate someone is suffering from depression:

  • Depressed mood: Feeling hopeless, sad, discouraged, or empty. If no matter what you do, you can’t cheer your friend up, and they are easily discouraged, or disheartened, this may be a sign that they are suffering from depression.
  • Loss of interest or pleasure: One of the big signs of depression is the inability to experience pleasure. So, if nothing seems to interest your friend anymore, including former hobbies, social activities, etc. it is probably time to find them some help.
  • Appetite or weight changes: Significant weight loss or weight gain-meaning a change of more than 5% of body weight in a month, indicates something serious. People who are depressed often lose their appetite, or they over eat. So, if you notice your friend’s eating habits change significantly, you may want to explore further and see if they are depressed.
  • Sleep changes: Insomnia or oversleeping (also known as hypersomnia) are signs of depression. This is not something you are really going to notice, but your friend may talk about how they can’t sleep, or about how tired they are even though they sleep all of the time. If you notice this, talk to your friend about the effects of depression.
  • Psychomotor agitation or retardation: this is a sign of depression you will immediately notice, but may not know what to attribute it to. If your friend starts acting very anxious, is unable to sit still, is restless or sluggish, has abnormally slow speech and body movements, or lack of responsiveness, they may be suffering from some very serious depression.
  • Fatigue or loss of energy: There are times when you are going to be energy less, and that is normal. But, if your friend is physically drained after even small tasks, or wakes up and routine things are exhausting, you may want to talk to them about depression.
  • Self-loathing: Strong feelings of worthlessness or guilt, and harsh criticism of perceived faults and mistakes are a common sign of depression in teen girls. This is not normal. Some self criticism is, but being unable to see good in yourself is a sign of depression.
  • Concentration problems: Inability to focus, difficulty making decisions, and memory problems are not always because of ADD and ADHD, but are commonly categorized inappropriately. Such behaviors and problems with focus can also be an effect of depression.
  • Irritability: Grouchy, easily annoyed, and frustrated by little things, and angry outbursts are all signs of depression. When someone is depressed even little things can make them frustrated and angry. So, if your friend seems abnormally irritable, or at least more irritable than a regular person should be, you may want to talk to them about depression.


How to help:

Find out why your friend is depressed. You may already know.did they just have a bad break-up or did their parents get divorced?

Don’t tell your friend stuff like life is still worth living, the situation will improve and the sadness will get better. This trivializes their pain and will not help.

Advise them to seek professional help. Depression is not something that goes away by itself after a while. It is a serious mental illness.

Don’t press them too hard.

Keep them talking, as it helps, but, don’t force them to be dependent on you.